Expressive painting with acrylics with Maggie Feeny

Painting - Water Based

Ref: S3D11491

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About this course

Use unusual tools and approaches to mark-making to free your acrylic painting. Paint with enjoyment and playfulness to build confidence and push the boundaries of your practice.

Course Description

Investigate and experiment with colour, tone and texture, using acrylic paints and drawing mediums to develop your unique visual expression.  Use a variety of tools, painting surfaces and approaches to encourage freedom and spontaneity in mark-making.

You will learn to playfully experiment with materials which will increase the elements of chance and the incidental in your painting.  Through this intuitive process, you will allow the form and composition of your subject to be teased out as you add and remove paint, using techniques of thin washes and thick impasto.  You will work both from memory and inspirational images, or objects, as you allow your subject to emerge.  The tutor will offer one-to-one support and guidance towards finding your own process and expression.  You will explore what brings a painting to life, considering composition, contrasting tones, colours, line and shape.  You will also consider why the eye is drawn to particular focal points and why a painting ‘works’ over one that doesn’t.

By the end of the course, you will have gained confidence in your use of colours, marks and textures, to create exciting and dynamic paintings.  You will have gained an insight into the processes and materials that inspire freedom of expression and un-bounded mark-making in your work, taking home a number of experimental painted studies and/or completed paintings.


Arrival Day - this is the first date listed above

Courses start early evening. Residential students to arrive from 4pm, non-residential students to arrive by 6.45pm.

6.45pm: Welcome, followed by dinner (included).

8 - 9pm: First teaching session, attendance is essential.

Daily timetable

Classes 9.15 - 5pm, lunch is included.

From 6.30pm: Dinner (included for residential students).

Evening working - students may have access to workshops until 9pm, but only with their tutor's permission and provided any health and safety guidelines are observed.

Last day

Classes 9.15am - 3pm, lunch is included.

Residential students are to vacate their rooms by 10am please.

(This timetable is for courses of more than one day in length. The tutor may make slight variations)

Course Materials


  • Acrylic MDF primer
  • Acrylic flow improver
  • Gel Medium Matt/ Gloss
  • 2 x MDF 6mm boards 40 x 40cm each
  • Light stick masking tape
  • Small rubber kidney
  • Compressed charcoal
  • A3 Seawhites acrylic pad
  • Seawhites Baker brush size 50

What students need to bring

Please bring any of the materials listed on the available to buy list below that you may already have, plus:

Yellow Ochre,  Lemon Yellow, Cadmium Orange, Cyan, or Cerulean Blue, Prussian Blue, Burnt Umber, Magenta, Paynes Grey, Titanium White and Black, (this is a basic list, please bring other colours you enjoy using)
Makes:-  Rowney System 3 -  good for experimentation if using a lot, especially white
             Winsor and Newton Artist’ - good professional quality
             Golden heavy body, and or fluid - excellent professional quality
(The College Shop stocks a good range of Schminke acrylic paint in the above colours and Seawhite acrylic paint in black and white)
Containers/receptacles with lids, these can be jam jars, yoghurt pots etc for mixing and storing runny
paint, 3 – 4 would be useful 
Large flat palette (could be plastic table mat or rubber tile) (Perspex available from shop)
Pointed implements for scratching through paint, e.g. empty ball-point pens, pottery scrafitto tools
Rubber or surgical gloves (optional)
Small water spray bottle
Kitchen roll
Inspirational photos/drawings, (the tutor will bring some visual resource material).

Available to buy

  • Acrylic paints, suggested colours: Schminke
  • Acrylic medium – gloss or matt (if more required)
  • 2 x canvas (30 x30cm min)
  • 2+ Acrylic paper A2 size sheets
  • A selection of flat brushes (not decorators as too thick) and round brushes
  • Large & small rigger brushes
  • Drawing materials eg. pencils, wax crayons
  • Palette knife.
  • Small sketch book (optional)

Please wear appropriate clothing/aprons for the workshop or studio, this includes stout covered footwear i.e. no open-toes or sandals. You may need safety boots, if specified above.


Maggie Feeny

Maggie Feeny has been a teacher and professional artist for over 30 years. She trained in Bristol, London and Brighton and has taught painting and ceramics. She curated exhibitions in her Artist's Open House, Brighton, attracting artists from London, Cornwall and neighbouring counties. Maggie's work is exhibited nationally in both private and public spaces.


Residential option available. Find out accommodation costs and how to book here.

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